Friday, January 23, 2009

I Need Some Help Here...

As you know , my nephew Cygnus and I are both planning a move to the country!

In trying to cover all the basics of what we need for our separate adventures, we have talked about many things. Things from food supplies, power requirements, shelter building, transportation, gardening, homestead animals, self protection devices, just about everything we can think of!

The reason for us bouncing ideas off one another, is to make sure that when we move...we don't forget anything that would help to get us started. We have to do it now, because when the time comes...nephew is going in one direction and I in another.

Also, I'll be gone and on the way before Cygnus. With our different time frames and destinations, any discussions and brainstorming needs to be done now. You see, both of us are headed to places where we will be furnishing our own power and water and all the other "necessities"!

Here is where I need some help! I need to find the most reliable and effective way to obtain Internet access. Remember, there will be no phone service, no cable, nothing. Now, do we try and get satellite Internet? If so, which service can be best powered with solar or wind generators or a combination of both? Is there a better or alternative way to access the Net from the country, when the closest town is at least 20 or 30 miles away?

I'm hoping that someone has had at least some experience using one or more of these options ...and will share their ideas and suggestions with me. I've been searching and searching on the web, and I have explored a number of ideas. Most of them are very short on information, and very long on hype! That's why I'm looking for someone that has some actual experience and can shed a little light on this quest!

I'm looking forward to your input, and let me say "Thank you" in advance...and as a reward, I'll put on a fresh pot of coffee!

Care for a cup, my friend?

23 comments:

Phelan said...

Your best bet is to head into town for your weekly/monthly supplies and stop at the library for the net. But. . . or farmstead (not the homestead) has nothing on it. We have a steam powered generator to power everything and will be looking into satellite for Internet. There is no cell phone out there. Satellite seems to be expensive and the farmstead is so far out there that no one will come out to set anything up or even inspect anything. I guess I shouldn't be giving advice as I haven't gone that route yet.

FarmerGeek said...

I haven't gone that route either, but I have known people that have used the cell service interenet with the cellular modem that you plug into the computer. That works rather well, but it can be slower and you do have size limits/charges for use. Also, you have to have cell service where the new homestead will be. But its a thought, and as I said, I've seen it work well for some people.

Baby Sis said...

Hey, Bubba -
As much as I love to see your dreams come into fruition, I hate to think of you wayyyy out there with no way to keep in touch. I know how much your e-friends mean to you, and I see your "follower" numbers are growing daily! Guess I'll have to be the Mama-lady caretaker for a while, difficult from my location, but I guess it's my turn. Unless we can persuade Big Sis to come back here? Rather doubtful with those babies so close by.....

Rods Wanderings said...

Here is what I use.
http://www.clearwire.com/store/service_areas.php
It works off the cell phone and we have been very happy with it. check it out this site will show you the coverage area.
Good luck
Rod

YeOldFurt said...

Hermit,
We're waaaaaay out too. Use satellite connection right now. Had dial up for a while. Use solar power/batteries with converters. All seems to work well.
YeOldFurt

HermitJim said...

Hey Phelan...Steam generator? That sounds pretty cool! I sure would like to see somepictures of your set-up someday! I appreciate you taking the time to comment on this search...

Hey FG...I'm not sure if the cell phone is going to be a viable option, and weather or not cells even work here yet. I have considered that option, but I certainly appreciate the input non the less!

You have a good day!

Hey Sis...good to se ya again! Been wondering where you were! So how is the better half, or should I say "other half" enjoying retirement?

As far as staying in touch, that's why I'm trying to get all the bugs worked out with this stuff before I go.

We'll have to talk about all the details when I get things worked out!

HermitJim said...

Hey Rod...appreciate you coming by this morning. I appreciate the link as well!

This is one reason why I love the internet...I can just ask my friends about some advise, and get all the help I could ever want!

I appreciate all the input, believe me!

Hey YeOldFurt...
What company are you using? I've looked at companies like BlueSky...and was just wondering out much is true, and how much is hype.

Sounds like you are in an ideal location to me! Sure do thank you for coming by!I appreciate your comment as well!

Riverwalker said...

I've got a laptop and use the Wi-Fi at the library when I don't use my current home service. It's fast and free. My son and I also share a USB plug-in cellular service through AT&T. You do need cell phone service in the area to use it but an area with a signal is generally pretty easy to find. The service dors cost though. Hope this helps.

RW

HermitJim said...

Hey RW...during and after hurricane Ike, because of the interruption of phone service and Internet (cable) I went to Circuit City and bought a broadband card from Verizon. After a week of non-service, I just had to get connected to the outside world again!

It works fine, but I only intend to use it in case of emergencies! Hey, I appreciate your input and hope you have a good day, my man!

Mayberry said...

No internet advice, but why don't y'all throw in together? I realize there's a lot of real estate between west Texas and the Ozarks, but I reckon y'all would be better off as a pair than seperately.... Personally, I reckon I'd use your place as a backup retreat, and Cygnus's as the primary. Somethin' to chew on anyways.....

HermitJim said...

Hey Mayberry...don't think that idea hasn't been tossed about a bit! Plus we figure that having a choice of 2 places to head to is a damn site better than one!

Might just have to do that! Thanks for the input!

Jennersen said...

Got bluetooth? Forget cell card for computer, route through your cell phone. It is a service and it does cost money. It is much faster then dailup. Your cell phone will be your router, and it is password protected so other people cannot just jump on your bandwidth. My friend the Eagle did this during Ike. He set it up at my house. We had power and net, and were only down for a few hours. He was without power for weeks, and is a law student. The internet is a must for him. But it works like a charm.

HermitJim said...

I'll have to check because I'm not sure that cell phone service is even available in the area that I am going to.

I sure do appreciate the information and I thank you for stopping by.

Ashley said...

I need to figure that out, too... I'm about to move into the RV, and I don't use the 'Net as much as you do these days, but when I use it I often require decent bandwidth. And I have multiple devices that need access. So I'm going to look at satellite-based access. I'll let you know what I find out.

Hugs,
Ashley

HermitJim said...

Hey Ashley...thanks for coming by! I'm pleased that you are finally getting to move into the RV...I appeciate any input you may find and share.

Just a question here...how close is phone and electric to your land? Do you remember?

Cygnus MacLlyr said...

Rest easy, baby Sis; Cygnus is in town... and he has a complete copy of Frost to bide him through his time...

Hey Rod, thanks for the link. We'll explore...

RIVERWALKER... of the Texas Preppers Network fame... GOOD advice!!

Mayberry, you know I bow down...
We're dialogueing even as I type...
You, Dude, RULE. Thanks for the input...

Ashley... I'm going out on the proverbial limb (I always was the adventurous one! Har!) and say three heads are better than some ol' bird's solo! You've gotta come by, and we've gotta talk... Druid Talk, cousin; Druid Talk...

I echo the cry for help, folks.

So HELP!!!! DO IT!!! GET OFF YOUR anus and RESPOND!!!!!!!!!!

wendigo said...

A lot of my Solar info & equipment comes from RV Solar Electric out of Scottsdale AZ. (408) 443-8520 or RVSolarElectric.com they have been around for years.

ConfessionsOfAnOverworkedMom said...

I think a lot depends on where you're going. How far "way out" is way out? How close to a town with wi fi? How often will you be going into town? How often do you need internet connection?

We're considered country but not as far out as I'd like. We have no satellite internet. We got cable internet 2 years ago & it works pretty well. But I have a friend a bit further out who has no cable & no sattellite internet. I have cell service where I am but a mile up the road, it's gone.

Will you have a landline phone? You can do dial up if you can tolerate it.

There is no wi fi in my town. About half an hour away toward the bigger city, there are two places I can pick it up if I had to.

So... check out the resources where you're going and take it from there.

Internet is my one splurge and I won't give it up unless I truly have to.

Shakes said...

I am in the rural Ozarks, and still on the grid. I use HughesNet satalite which can be pretty slow compared to cable broadband, but a lot faster than dial up and a bit faster than dsl.
Family nearby have BlueSky, and while a bit faster, they impose a strict download limit, and once your bandwidth limit is met, service slows down considerably (same with HugesNet, but I believe their limits are less strict.)
Good luck with the move, your gonna love the Ozarks.
Shakes

Stephanie in AR said...

Before I signed a contract for cell phone service I would make sure there was a clause, in writing, to get you out of the contract if there is no reception at your place. For some odd reason there is only one spot in the yard where dh can get one bar on his cell phone - when the wind is right, the moon is full, and he is leaning just so. Other friends and relatives with different carriers have the same problem they just get to stand in different spots. NO JOKE. Dh happened to lean over and improved his reception. Yet neighbors around us have no problem. It would be terrible to be stuck with a company & have to do a mamba in the yard to get to use the computer.

I'd like to suggest you get a catalog from Native Seeds/search. They collect native seeds in the South West and are an excellent source for seeds & growing advice for your area/climate. I've bought their seeds in the past just so I would have some varieties that would do well in a drought situation. And they are heirloom too & encourage seed saving. Their website is http://www.nativeseeds.org/ look at the right in the topbar for a download catalog.

You might also look over (for ideas) the Path to Freedom website. They raised 6000 lbs of food on 1/5 of an acre (their city lot). Since you are going to the desert you will want to produce a lot in a small amount of space. They have some good ideas that you could adapt to your situation. http://urbanhomestead.org/journal/ If this weren't comments I'd talk some more (and it weren't so late) Remind me about watering idea with greywater.

Then I'd see if anyone had some manure you could dump at your place. I think, for any garden attempts you will want to do like the Indians in the SW and dig *down* beds instead of raised beds. Take soil out, refill 1/2 way with manurey stuff so it is recessed. Water in the *waffles* scrounge stuff to make shades for some of the beds as your growing stuff will need it. find something to use for mulch. Cardboard should be easy to find (your moving boxes). Water comes from greywater filter through a clay pot (similiar to the ollas at the freedom path site & opposite of Wretha's post on purifying drinking water using clay pots).

fwiw I find any move -even the ones I really wanted- it takes a year of going through all the seasons to really feel at home & decide you didn't lose your mind. Anyhow gotta go. hth

HermitJim said...

Hey Shakes...sure do appreciate you dropping by! I guess we will hve to see wht's available when we get to our prospective spots. I sure do thank you for your input and for coming by!

Hey Stephanie...I am so glad you cme by...and I appreciate all the good info. That must be a bummer for the neighbors to get a signal and you can't.

I can just picture DH leaning to get the signal...quite a picture!!

Thanks for all the information, my friend! I truly appreciate it!

Stephanie in AR said...

Well we have only the one cell phone prepaid. since he's the one driving to work he takes it & if necessary just calls the landline. It was harder before we moved & turned on the landline as our sons in the Air Force only have cell phones & it worried us to maybe miss a call - are are very rare at the beginning. That is how we found the one spot. Dh & I were walking the yard when his phone rang and leaned over to discover he could hear his son. Funny but grateful. lol dh isn't exactly a spring chicken & likes my cooking, he sure was a sight doing his leaning tower of pisa imitation. Country life sure is grand if you let it be.

HermitJim said...

We just have to find the humor in all situations...something that I feel folks in the country can do much easier than city folks!

Hey...older guys that like good cooking is something I can associate with!

I sure am glad you could visit tonight! Enjoyed the visit...